Shari "Laine" Buckmaster was the second child of Jim and Shirley Buckmaster. Her older sister (Julie Lynne) was born three years before Shari. Her brother (Brian James) was born three years after Shari.
As a child she loved the outdoors and living in the country. We had thirteen acres for the kids to roam around on. Cats and dogs were the daily entertainment for the children. Laine was especially fond of a golden cat that loved to jump on the counters. Naughty Kitty!
Laine got to take rides with her Dad in his Cessna 150. She even flew with him to church at the church property outside of Wisconsin Dells. How cool she thought it was to park an airplane instead of a car.
School age brought joy to her by putting her talents to work. She was identified as gifted and talented, when that whole idea was fairly new in the educational system. Because she was motivated to excel, she was "allowed" to sit in the hallway and work independently. What a concept! She told her classmates that the teacher allowed her to be there because she "needed more time to think."
One of her art pieces was displayed at the capital in Madison, Wisconsin. It was a watercolor rendition of a goat. Go figure???? Nevertheless, she was always proud of the recognition.
As an elementary student she started taking ballet classes. She found the first love of her life. DANCE! She then expanded her dancing skills by adding Tap class, Jazz class, Hula and Tahitian classes. Often there were private lessons added too. As a child she was never happier than when she was practicing at the dance studio. Although she attended many dance schools in Madison, her longest term was spent at Virginia Davis dance school. By the time that she was in eighth grade she was an assistant dance teacher. We had gone to Hawaii when she was 12 years old. While we were there we purchased feather gourds that are used in Hula dance. She was so proud to perform a solo hula with those brilliant red feathers attached to the gourd with the seeds inside that rhythmically rattled to the music. Her goal began to shape up to eventually manage her own dance school. One day after we had gone out for a family meal, she was jubilant about being home. She did a grand kick with a narrow skirt on. She pulled her footing out and slammed onto the pavement. We took her to the ER (she walked in on her own power) and they said there was nothing wrong. Shari said, "I am a dancer ,I know my body, there is something wrong." I told the doctors that we were not leaving the ER until we had a second opinion. After some time a radiologist came and told us that Laine had fractured her pelvis. She eventually recovered from that and was again in the "carry on" mode.
Health issues struck. She became ill for many months. The clinic where I took her began to look at us like we were just complainers. Bummer. She did not like the way that she felt when the doctors had a note of disbelief. After many months, of her just reposing on the couch, we finally got answers. Her blood was sent to the Mayo Clinic and it was identified that she was the first one in the state of Wisconsin to have Epstein Barr Virus. This gave answers, but didn't change the fact that she would have chronic fatigue issues.
In spite of setbacks, the worst one being unable to attend dance class due to extreme tiredness, Shari carried on. Eighth grade came and went and she was ready to move on to high school. She decided that Shari was not how she wanted to be identified, sooo....she told all of her friends that when they moved to the next school, they were to call her by her middle name: LAINE. Whew, that took us about five years to get used to.
Her academic abilities put her in a position where school became boring. The next chapter of her life began at age 16. Her school records were such that she applied to the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She was a pioneer on high school students being able to "start" college early. This was 1986-the dawning of new thinking in education to meet the needs of those wanting to go forward, full tilt. Thus, she was welcomed to the University at age 16. She lived in a beautiful co-op on Lake Mendota. It was called "Martha's co-op". She again was excelling and enjoying the outdoors.
Laine began to learn about quantity food preparation and "whole " foods. (Organic, before the organic awareness and benefits were accepted by people other than the fringers of society.) She practiced being a vegetarian for a while and continued to study nutrition. She fell in love with cooking and eventually had invitations to continue on and become a master chef at some fine restaurants in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Life was breezing along.
Laine was 5'10" tall and naturally photogenic. Her next adventure was in the education that she got at the Gerud Modeling School in Madison, Wisconsin. (Her brother Brian died during this time from a car accident.) Laine graduated from the Modeling school and entered in the International Modeling and Talent Competition in Manhattan, New York. She received three offers to model, one in Japan, one at Marcella in Italy and one at Jon Casablanca's in Chicago. Because of her brother's death, she decided to come home from it all. She took a position teaching at Jon Casablanca's in Waukesha Wisconsin. She had a way of acknowledging and showing acceptance and appreciation to the developing talents in her models training.. She taught "self-confidence" make-up and modeling techniques. She received many thank you cards for the inspiration and enthusiasm that she shared with everyone.
Later she had an opportunity to learn to become a journeyman painter. She learned how to bid jobs, organize purchases and workers to create a timely and quality job. She began to travel with a person who painted water towers. It was fun for a while, but then it became out of control. The person she was with decided that he did not like her any more. He locked her in a rural deer locker for three days. He then took her out and while holding a rifle on her told her that she had to beg him for her life. She said that she did not beg anyone for her life. He then said that he would beat her to death and throw her in the lake. It was a terrible, mighty struggle. She got away and ran toward the highway. People helped her get to the ER in Minnesota. Long story short...although the Minnesota police photographed 37 cuts and bruises, especially on the head and although she had broken bones, she did not pursue the charges. She came back to Madison. She was terrified because she found out that his family was part of Chicago mafia. He told her that if she pursued charges he would have her taken out. He stalked her for 3 years. During this time she was staying with her great grandmother.
Laine then worked at a dental clinic in Madison, WI. She learned the business and rose to excel again. Her job description included reception, scheduling, patient services and processing insurance. She easily connected with the patients. She had her own fear of dentists, so her compassion was well received.
During this time period Laine developed excruciatingly painful skin symptoms on her legs and feet. There were some lesser symptoms on her hands and elbows. No one seemed to know why this was continuing.
Her uncle, who served in Vietnam, became debilitated from Agent Orange. Laine moved in with him to help with general household tasks. Laine's uncle called me one morning to tell me that there was major pain going on. We Got Laine to the ER and the doctor said that she would need emergency surgery for a ruptured appendix. The doctor that she was handed off to sent her home saying, "You have gas." The doctor gave her three days of pain pills. Laine called after the pain pills were used up and said that she could not take the pain any more. We went back to the ER. The same ERR doctor was there and said, "Didn't you just have appendix surgery?" Laine was readmitted. After several days of morphine drip they decided to do exploratory surgery. YUP! The appendix had ruptured. It was a miracle that she survived. However, she was then told that she probably would never have a child. One fallopian tube was missing and the other was crushed.
During this time Laine met Tim Schweitzer, who is Alexander's dad. Laine became pregnant and did not know it. For real! She had been told that she was a candidate for bowel problems. So when there was movement she just thought it was her new bowel symptoms. The day that Alexander was born was full of anxiety. Laine was not feeling up to par, so we took her to the ER again. After some time of waiting, the doctor came in. He took a short look and said, "You are having a baby now!" So it was straight away to the birthing floor. Baby's heart rate dropped from 120 to 40. Emergency C-section. Laine nearly bled to death. The Neurologist met with up and listed scary things that happen to a baby that is oxygen deprived. Alexander was put in the neonatal intensive care unit and it was planned for him to be there for a month. One week later he was released and the doctor said it was a miracle. Laine was a tender and loving mother to her new son. As Alexander grew she continued to do her best.
Tragedy struck again. Her sister, Julie, died from Bi-polar issues. She left behind a child, Shana. Laine's life was upside down again.
She carried on by getting a management job at North Farms Co-op. The first co-op of its type in Madison. She was a team leader in marketing and warehouse management. She streamlined customer services and increased profits. During this time she had a racing bike to commute to work. One morning as she was racing on her way to work she scrubbed the front tire on the curb and catapulted on the pavement. She said that she immediately knew that she had fractured her pelvis again.
Due to multiple health issues that piled up on her, Laine finally applied for Social Security Disability. It was the last thing that she wanted to do. But life was getting too hard. She qualified.
She met another man - Henry Vargas from Peru. They got married and lived in McFarland, WI. He helped bring more of his family to Wisconsin. Laine did her best to teach them about United States culture.
Eventually they moved to an apartment above the Glass Nickel in Sun Prairie. On July 10, 2018 there was a tremendous explosion in Sun Prairie on Main Street. This blew out the windows of the apartment and lit the building on fire. There was an evacuation, but they did not know that Laine was still in the building. By the time that she realized the building was on fire, there was no escape. The stairs were an inferno. Eventually the firemen got her out of the building by ladder. All was gone except for the clothes on her back, her purse and her little dog - Bullet. She was immediately homeless. She came to live with us. Henry carried on with his business as he tried to move on from the losses from the fire.
Shortly after the fire, Laine was found unconscious and unresponsive on our kitchen floor. The ambulance was called, they did CPR (fractured ribs) and she went to the ER. She did not like hospitals. She left AMA. I was in Minnesota and I immediately came home. Two days later Laine was again found unconscious and unresponsive. Again to the ER. This time admitted with a diagnosis of pneumonia. I stayed with her until her lungs recovered enough to leave the hospital.
Laine was very self-educated on many aspects of medical and pharmaceutical therapies. As Laine was researching ways to help her legs get better so that she could walk comfortably she came upon TCM-Traditional Chinese Medicine. Her wonderful doctor Hong Zhang of www.AcuPanda.com min Waunakee was using herbs and other therapies for healing. Laine was finally getting relief from chronic issues of skin problems and pain problems.. Her body was well enough to comfortably take her dog "Bullet" for a walk.
Laine is survived by her husband Henry Lazo Vargas; son Alexander Schweitzer; parents Jim and Shirley Buckmaster; uncle Wayne Yelk; brother-in-law Willy Vargas; nieces Eimy, Whitney, Britney, and Alexandra; nephew Joseph; and other relatives, and dear friends. She was preceded in death by her brother Brian Buckmaster, sister Julie Buckmaster, grandmothers Lyla Yelk and Edith Buckmaster; aunts Anita Weiner and Georgia Kast; uncles Kerry Yelk and Dick Davis; and cousin Shana Heimerl.
In her last few days, she made steak strips and homemade French fries for her son, Alexander. They also had a pleasant restaurant meal and good conversation.
There are no words to express the sadness of the loss of her. Laine was vivacious, spunky and charismatic. She was a loyal and free spirited friend. She believed in God and prayed often for understanding.
Dear Laine, may God bless you with great healing in the Resurrection.
See you then!
A memorial service will be at 12:00 PM (noon) on Sunday, August 25, 2019 at Cress Funeral Service, 3325 E. Washington Ave., Madison, WI 53704 with a visitation 11:00-12:00 PM prior to service.
Cress Funeral Service
3325 E. Washington Ave.
Madison, WI 53704 608-249-6666
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Shirley, I am so sorry for your loss. You have had too many, many tragedies in your family. Keep up your faith in God. See you next Sunday. For your info, our 1966 luncheon is for any class member who would like to attend. I would have sent you an e-mail for the last one, but your e-mail is not listed in the class book. Next luncheon is at 11:30 AM at BB Jacks's in DeForest. Jackie Tennant - MY E-mail email@example.com
Laine was one of a kind. She was extremely intelligent, an excellent cook, had an eye for fashion and the arts, and she loved her family deeply. Our deepest condolences go out to Aunt Shirley, Uncle Buck, and Alexander. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Dear Beloved Cousin, you were called home to soon. You are loved and missed. You will never be forgotten. Fly free little Dove .
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